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whooping cough jab today - suddenly worried I am not doing the right thing!

(10 Posts)
emeraldgirl1 Wed 16-Jan-13 08:11:13

Just what the title says really. I have been very very strongly advised by my obstetrician and MW to have it, absolutely no doubt in their minds and the doctor explained the way it works (doesn't 'cross' the placenta???).

I am also a HUGE believer in medical science and modern medicine, not a member of the lavender candle brigade at all. (Not to say I don't enjoy a lovely lavender candle, in fact I lit one in my room for relaxation only last night grin...)

But today I am starting to work myself up that I am doing the wrong thing, that somehow it will be dangerous for the baby. I am a worrier about the baby's health at the best of times, naturally neurotic is a kind way to describe me.

Can anyone give me advice/reassurance?

noblegiraffe Wed 16-Jan-13 08:43:06

The vaccine doesn't cross the placenta to the baby, the antibodies that you produce in response to the vaccine do cross the placenta and this is what will hopefully give your baby protection in the first few weeks before they can have their own jab.

Unfortunately there are some unknowns because this particular jab, which is the same as my 3 year old has just been given hasn't specifically been tested on pregnant women, but the components all have with no apparent ill effects, and from what is known about giving dead vaccines to pregnant women, there wouldn't be expected to be any ill effects.

Everyone I know who has had any experience of whooping cough in children has strongly advised the jab to avoid it if at all possible, and of course some poor babies have died in the current outbreak which is why they're offering it in the first place.

noblegiraffe Wed 16-Jan-13 08:44:23

Sorry, possibly misleading, the components haven't been tested on pregnant women, they've been given to pregnant women.

emeraldgirl1 Wed 16-Jan-13 08:48:15

Thank you noblegiraffe, also your explanation has made it clearer than it was when the doctor explained it smile

Yes, having heard awful stories of newborns getting very ill or even dying I just do not want to take that risk, which is why I had so firmly decided that getting the jab was the right thing to do.

I think I'm getting a bit of buyer's remorse in advance! Now that I'm so much further on in the pregnancy my baby is starting to feel like a real person and I'm just getting paranoid that the jab might harm her development in some way.

noblegiraffe Wed 16-Jan-13 09:03:30

Worries about the baby's development is one of the reasons they only give it so late in pregnancy (along with it being the optimum time for antibody transfer). By 28 weeks all the major organ developmental stuff is done and what's left to do is mainly growing and getting stronger. And remember lots of babies whose mother had the jab have been born by now.

I think it's natural to worry, all we can do is weigh up the risks and decide what is best for our own peace of mind.

emeraldgirl1 Wed 16-Jan-13 09:10:46

Thanks again noblegiraffe - you're right, weighing up the risks is the only thing we can do and I know for sure that I feel strongly that the risk of not getting the jab is more of a worry to me than the risk of getting it.

Welcome to parenthood, I suppose wink

Dogsmom Wed 16-Jan-13 09:13:04

I had it, my MW said that it's the same jab they give to the little babies, another factor for me was that I had whooping cough as a baby and although I can't remember it I've been told how seriously ill I was with it.

I may be wrong but I'm sure I read somewhere that women in the USA have been given it for years with loads of babies born to them and no ill effects?

TwitchyTail Wed 16-Jan-13 09:24:29

Whooping cough = potentially fatal in an unvaccinated newborn. Real, serious risk.

Vaccine = safe as far as anyone knows. Potential risk.

Easy decision for me. I feel my duty is to protect my child from preventable diseases, and I would never forgive myself if he did catch whooping cough and have serious consequences. I think you're doing the right thing by having it.

Though my arm did hurt like buggery for a couple of days grin Ask for it in your right arm if you're sleeping on your left!

emeraldgirl1 Wed 16-Jan-13 09:29:30

Thank you Twitchy. That's exactly how I felt (until this morning...!) I know I am doing the right thing (as I see it) and I know in my heart of hearts that this is all you can ever do.

worsestershiresauce Wed 16-Jan-13 10:29:39

I had it - it was a no brainer for me. Whooping cough is a real risk in the part of the country I live in, and tiny babies are vulnerable. They can die. I couldn't carry my baby for 9 months and then watch a horrible disease take them knowing I could have done something to prevent it.

I agree about the sore arm though, it hurts more than the flu vacc, and for a couple of days longer.

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